I was asked over wine with a good friend, what my greatest fear is.
Of course, we were three or so glasses in, you know, when it starts becoming more and more acceptable/fun to talk about the big questions in life (although I’m down anytime, life talks are bae).
My answer to this question tends to shift and change with where I am in my life.
A year ago, my greatest fear was not doing what I was put here to do. Not a coincidence that I was in my last year of college — still didn’t really know what I wanted to do, I just knew I wanted to something (and something big).
It took awhile, but I finally realized that by simply practicing kindness and sharing your passions with the world, you are doing what you were put here to do.
So, good. One fear gone (although this one creeps up on me when I’m not at my best — because we should all be at our best to do great and awesome things for the world, duh).
As I have attempted to navigate the real-world, and believe me, it hasn’t been pretty at times (shoutout to mom for being on the other end of the line for freak out sessions about liTERally nothing), I have started to think a lot about time, and different ways in which it applies to me.
Now introducing my current life fears. And guess what? They contradict each other. So yes, my thoughts get confusing — and I get confused. But I think we’re all a little confused sometimes, so whatever.
Right now, I play it pretty safe. I have a good job, I support myself, I am surrounded by loved ones, in a familiar city that I love (honestly, Reno is cool I don’t even know how/when that happened but it did and I’m not complaining).
I am a big dreamer, but I am also a very strategic thinker. I am a worry-wart, so planning is a must, and I like things in order. However, I want to do crazy things. I want to live a full life with experiences and adventure. It is often difficult for me to work with these two desires — the desire for order and the desire for, well, chaos.
That is where fear number one comes in. I guess, I fear looking back and wondering “what if.” I fear looking back and wishing I had gone and done things. Wishing I hadn’t thought so much. Wishing I had listened to every single adult in my life that told me to “do it while I’m young.”
I don’t want to be the grandma, sitting in my rocking chair, telling my grandkids to go travel the world and follow their dreams — wishing I had done the same.
But again, I’m strategic. I like my work. I like to have a plan. And so, this fear is there, and this fear isn’t going away just yet.
My second fear, is almost a fear of my first fear (#wut).
I fear that I will look back, and realize that I always thought the grass was greener. I don’t want to wake up one day realizing that I dreamed my life away. I want to live my life away.
So I’m currently trying to balance my desire for great things and adventure, with my desire to appreciate where I am — to be happy and content every step of the way.
I don’t want to wake up one day realizing my happiness was right in front of me the whole time, but I also don’t want to wake up one day realizing that I played it safe just so that I could cross off the to do’s in my planner.
I don’t really have a conclusion on this one yet. Maybe after this year I’ll have the answer.
But, for now, I’ll practice gratitude in each step toward my adventures and be happy with what I have — be happy that I have the privilege to have big dreams and goals.
Because not everyone can say that.
And I guess, these fears don’t hold me back. If anything, they push me forward. They balance each other out — they remind me to be gracious in my daily life. They allow me to follow my plan — but only to an extent. To be able to put together my goals and dreams and make them actually attainable.
Maybe, my greatest fears are also my greatest allies — my greatest motivators.
Maybe, I don’t need to be scared anymore.
Whoa, I just figured it out — I guess that’s why I write, eh?
*Congrats, you got to know my two biggest fears without buying me a bottle of wine.